28 April 2017
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  • 28/04/2017 - EGYPT - VATICAN

    Francis and Patriarch Tawadros II want to move on the path of full unity. They prayed in the church attacked in December. “[J]ust as the heavenly Jerusalem is one, so too is our martyrology; your sufferings are also our sufferings.”




    28/04/2017 - EGYPT – VATICAN

    Pope in Egypt: Egypt called to condemn violence and poverty in the Middle East


    In his address to Egyptian authorities, Francis stressed Egypt’s role and responsibility in the future of the region. "In the fragile and complex situation of today’s world, which I have described as ‘a world war being fought piecemeal’, it needs to be clearly stated that no civilized society can be built without repudiating every ideology of evil, violence and extremism that presumes to suppress others and to annihilate diversity by manipulating and profaning the Sacred Name of God.”


    28/04/2017 - EGYPT - VATICAN

    Pope in Egypt: The future depends on the encounter of religions and cultures


    Francis in Cairo intervenes at the Peace Conference organized by Al-Ahram. Never commit violence in the name of God. "Without giving in to forms of facile syncretism,  our task is that of praying for one another, imploring from God the gift of peace, encountering one another, engaging in dialogue and promoting harmony in the spirit of cooperation and friendship."


    28/04/2017 - ISLAM – VATICAN – EGYPT

    A Muslim writes to the pope: Dear Pope Francis . . .

    by Kamel Abderrahmani

    He admires the charity shown by the pontiff towards Syrian Muslim refugees, and his push in favour of love and against hatred. Islamic scholars are not like this, he says, they do not denounce Daesh’s hatred and do nothing for Christians. He calls on the pontiff to press President to Sisi and Al Azhar to reform Islam. Without this Al Azhar risks being the academy of world fundamentalism. Here is the letter from our friend and collaborator Kamel Abderrahmani.


    27/04/2017 - EGYPT – VATICAN

    For Indian Jesuit, the pope’s visit of peace in Egypt will make history


    Fr Bimal Kerketta has lived in Egypt for 14 years. Pope Francis is a "man of peace. He has resisted terror and extremism [. . .] with great courage and wisdom.” Egyptians love him because despite threats and the tragic attacks against the two Coptic churches, he has not postponed his visit.


    27/04/2017 - ISRAEL – SYRIA

    Former Israeli minister confirms contacts between IS and the Jewish state


    Former Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Ya'alon said that the Islamic State group apologised for firing on an Israeli military unit. The reference is bout an incident last November in the Golan Heights. Officially Israel is neutral in the Syrian conflict, but it has helped anti-Assad and anti-Iran groups, including Jihadis.


    27/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: The Christian's life is not witness to an idea, but to obedience to God


    Becoming a "witness to obedience" is "a grace of the Holy Spirit," and we must ask for it. "It is a grace we must seek, 'Father, Lord Jesus, send me your Spirit so that I may become a witness of obedience, that is, a Christian.'


    27/04/2017 - ISRAEL – PALESTINE

    Marwan Barghouti, the Palestinian Nelson Mandela

    by Uri Avnery

    The great Israeli statist presents the Palestinian leader. In prison for 15 years, the latter is behind the hunger strike undertaken by inmates against prison conditions. His charisma can overcome Palestinian divisions between Fatah and Hamas. Perhaps this is why Israel will not release him.


    27/04/2017 - GERMANY - SYRIA - ISLAM

    The Sword and Kalashnikov do not lead to God, says former Isis jihadist, convert to Christianity

    by Pierre Balanian

    Hassan Abu Hamza wanted to be called Paul, in memory of the saint who, like him, is of Syrian origin. He intends to retrace his footsteps of tolerance after being a fierce persecutor. Online there are those who accuse him of having betrayed Islam. Others think it is a "Daesh attempt to infiltrate" fighters in Europe.


    27/04/2017 - SYRIA

    Damascus, "massive" explosion near the airport. Suspicions of an Israeli airraid


    The blast, also felt in the capital, enveloped a fuel tank and some warehouses near the airport. According to al-Manar it was caused by an Israeli air raid. Hezbollah logistics facilities in in Syria damaged. No victims or injured.


    26/04/2017 - LEBANON – EGYPT – VATICAN

    Francis in Egypt to strengthen Benedict XVI's "healthy secularism" in order to fight extremism

    by Fady Noun

    A recent conference in al-Azhar renewed the bases of the traditional relationship between the material and spiritual domains in Islam. Clearer bases are needed in the dialogue between Muslims and Christians. Benedict XVI’s teachings are important to understand the relationship between religion and politics and the difference between Christianity and the West.


    26/04/2017 - VATICANO

    Pope: Jesus will walk with us to the end of the earth, every day of our lives


    We will never cease to be "a concern for God's heart," because He is a God “passionate” for man, so tenderly loving as to be incapable of separating Himself from him." " Christian hope finds its root in fact not in the attraction of the future but in the certainty of what God has promised us and realized in Jesus Christ." "Our existence is a pilgrimage, a journeyEven all those who are moved by a simply human hope perceive the seduction of the horizon, which drives them to explore worlds they still do not know. Our spirit is a migrant soul "


    26/04/2017 - IRAN - UNITED STATES

    Vienna, uncertainty shrouds tenability of Iranian nuclear agreement


    Iran and the main international powers met yesterday in the Austrian capital. Focus of "closed door meeting" the "respect" of the terms of the agreement. Tensions between Washington and Tehran are increasing. Iranian Minister: The United States respects neither the spirit or the terms of the agreement. 


    25/04/2017 - EGYPT – VATICAN – ISLAM

    Catholic patriarch of Alexandria: Pope Francis’s visit will mark a renewal of the Church in Egypt

    by Loula Lahham

    Anba Ibrahim Isaac Sidrak describes his joy for Pope Francis’s visit and his uneasiness towards his country, hit by terrorism. He talks about the fraternal relations with Tawadros II and those with Al Azhar and President el-Sisi, as well as the renewal of the Church with new bodies, social tasks, and enhanced role for the lay men and women.


    25/04/2017 - IRAQ

    Despite the danger of attacks, millions of Shia pilgrims visit the Imām Mūsā shrine


    Masses of Shias commemorate the martyrdom of the seventh imam at the Al-Kādhimiya shrine, bringing the Iraqi capital to a standstill. Despite fears, no attacks or serious accidents have taken place. For the Chaldean Patriarch, the government has ensured “safe celebrations". The attempt to "national reconciliation" continues.


    25/04/2017 - VATICAN-EGYPT

    Pope Francis in a video message: Dear people of Egypt ...

    by Papa Francesco

    To mark his upcoming visit to the country (28-29 April), Pope Francis today sent a video message to the Egyptian people. " Our world, torn by blind violence, which has also afflicted the heart of your dear land – needs peace, love and mercy; it needs workers for peace. "


    25/04/2017 - VATICAN - EGYPT

    Pope Francis in Egypt, without an armored car. Program of visit


    Plans for Pope to tour among faithful in a golf car. The theme of the visit is "The Pope of Peace in Egypt of Peace". After visiting Al-Sisi and the great imam of Al Azhar, Francis will participate in the International Peace Conference organized by Al Tayyeb. A prayer for the martyrs of terrorism near the Coptic cathedral, where there was an attack in December. A meeting with the children of Cairo and with young pilgrims.


    25/04/2017 - ISRAEL - PALESTINE

    Gaza in the dark "paying” for power struggle between Hamas and Fatah


    The energy crisis is worsening after shutdown of only power station in the Strip. Fuel donated by Turkey and Qatar has run out. Palestinians in Gaza also struggling because of the cuts decided by the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah. The Gaza and Ramallah authorities blame each other. The UN warns of 'uninhabitable' by 2020


    24/04/2017 - TURKEY

    Republican Turkey and the Erdogan phenomenon (Part Two)

    by NAT da Polis

    The current Turkish President has favoured a new, mostly Anatolian middle class through neo-liberal policies at the expense of Kemalist statism. in doing so, he has allowed its members to express their religiosity more openly, but has himself also become more authoritarian.


    24/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Christianity is "concrete": the Word "made flesh, not an idea"


    "The Lord gives us all this Easter Spirit, to travel the paths of the Spirit without compromise, without stiffness, with the freedom to proclaim Jesus Christ as He came: in the flesh."


    24/04/2017 - LEBANON - SYRIA

    Beirut Bishop Kourie says the two bishops abducted in Syria in 2013 are still alive

    by Fady Noun

    The Lebanese Syriac Orthodox bishop made the claim during the celebrations for the 47th anniversary of Virgin's apparitions. The portraits of the two bishops were displayed inside the church and taken in procession. The prelate appealed to the Lebanese government to make the case a "national cause".


    24/04/2017 - BANGLADESH - SAUDI ARABIA

    Riyadh donates 10.8 billion euros to 560 mosques in Bangladesh: Muslims split

    by Sumon Corraya

    The agreement was signed between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the Saudi king last year. The mosques will teach lessons to more than 150,000 children. They will have a daily capacity of more than 450,000 men and 30,000 women. "Imams must be controlled." "These mosques will not teach true Islam. People will learn extremism. "


    24/04/2017 - SAUDI ARABIA - EGYPT

    Al-Sisi meets King Salman to relaunch relations between Cairo and Riyadh


    Tensions shelved, the Egyptian president receives a warm welcome when he arrives in the Saudi capital. The two leaders speak of "strong and fraternal" bonds and intention to "strengthen strategic relations". In addition to the economy, the unresolved knots of the fight against terrorism and control of the controversial islands.


    23/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Mercy is a form of knowledge that opens the door of the mind and heart


    On the Sunday of Divine Mercy, established by Saint John Paul II, Francis reiterated the importance of the experience of mercy, "the concrete form in which we give visibility to the resurrection of Jesus". He also explained the meaning of Sunday ‘in Albis’, and thanked those who sent him Easter greetings.


    22/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: The persecution of Christians comes from the devil's hatred


    Francis went to the basilica of St Bartholomew on the Tiber, which, after the Jubilee of 2000, was dedicated to the memory of the new martyrs of the 20th and 21st century. “The memory of these heroic, old and recent witnesses confirms us in the awareness that the Church is a Church of martyrs,” the pope said. “Refugee camps are concentration camps. They [refugees] are left there, because international agreements seem more important than human rights."


    22/04/2017 - HOLY LAND

    The ancient tradition of tattoos in the Holy Land


    At first, the tattoo was a sign of oppression that was eventually claimed as a proof of faith. From the crusades to the present day, for pilgrims the tattoo is a permanent testament to their journey.


    22/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Vatican releases message on Buddha’s feast day (Vesakh), stresses shared path of nonviolence


    Religions must work together because religion is often used to justify violence. Christians and Buddhists recognise the need to heal evil in the heart where it originates. They must promote peace education and respect for the environment as well as reject "hate speech" in the media and rebuild "broken societies".


    21/04/2017 - TURKEY

    Republican Turkey and the Erdogan phenomenon (Part One)

    by NAT da Polis

    The changes to the Constitution, through a popular referendum, fertile ground to claim and exercise power, in an authoritarian and personal context, like a new Kemal Ataturk.


    21/04/2017 - IRAQ

    Chaldean Priest: April 24, "symbolic" date of the reconstruction of the Nineveh plain


    Fr. Paul confirms the beginning of the reconstruction of homes in Qaraqosh, Bartella, Karamles. It is "important" to hurry to prevent the hemorrhaging of other Christian families from the region. A fund is made available by the Chaldean Church, but more funding is needed. Displaced people from plain employed in reconstruction.


    21/04/2017 - IRAN

    Rouhani and Raisi to contest presidential elections in Iran, Ahmadinejad excluded


    The Guardians Council approved six names out of a total of 1600 aspiring presidents. The nomination of 130 women rescinded, the 2017 vote men only. Economy and nuclear agreement remain the hot topics. Third-term for the former ultra-conservative president blocked, considered a figure "divisive" by Khamenei.






    Editor's choices

    VATICAN-EGYPT
    Pope Francis in a video message: Dear people of Egypt ...

    Papa Francesco

    To mark his upcoming visit to the country (28-29 April), Pope Francis today sent a video message to the Egyptian people. " Our world, torn by blind violence, which has also afflicted the heart of your dear land – needs peace, love and mercy; it needs workers for peace. "


    ISLAM
    The roots of violent Islamism are in Islam, the words of a Muslim

    Kamel Abderrahmani

    After every terrorist attack, there is the tendency to say, "This is not Islam." Yet those criminal acts are justified and inspired by texts that are the reference point for Muslims and Islamic institutions worldwide. There is an urgent need to reform Islam from within, by the Muslims themselves. Coexistence with other religions is the way to remove Islam from sclerosis and stagnation.


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